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Iran’s new president promises to warm up ties with world

5 August 2013 16:30 (UTC+04:00)
Iran’s new president promises to warm up ties with world

By Sara Rajabova

Finally, the most expected president of Iran took the oath of office with the participation of the Iranian lawmakers and senior officials as well as foreign dignitaries, after being endorsed by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, the Iranian media reported.

Hassan Rohani, whose four-year tenure officially started on August 4, takes over from Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

During his swearing-in ceremony, the new Iranian president called on Western governments to "speak to Iran not with the language of sanctions, but with the language of respect."

Rohani noted that the only way for interaction with Iran is "dialog on equal footing, mutual confidence-building, mutual respect, and reduction of hostilities," adding that his policy would be based on "reducing tensions, mutual confidence-building and constructive interaction" with the world.

Rohani also promised to concentrate more on economic prosperity and to increase investment in industries and agriculture, saying that his "government's orientation will comprise saving Iran's economy, reviving ethics and constructive interaction with the world".

Meanwhile, within hours, the United States said it was ready to work with Rouhani's government if it were serious about engagement.

White House spokesman Jay Carney in a statement that the White House has described the beginning of President Rohani's tenure as an opportunity for Iran to act quickly to resolve the international community's deep concerns over Iran's nuclear program.

"Should this new government choose to engage substantively and seriously to meet its international obligations and find a peaceful solution to this issue, it will find a willing partner in the United States," the statement said.

Besides, former EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana expressed hope that the standoff between Iran and the West over Tehran's nuclear program will be settled during President Rouhani's tenure, Fars news agency reported.

"Rouhani's election heralds a new era for the nuclear negotiations and the two sides should understand the advantages of the new conditions and I believe that reaching an agreement and diplomatic solution is possible," Solana said in an interview with Iran's Sharq newspaper published on August 4.

"We won't have a long time. Neither the G5+1 (the US, Russia, China, Britain and France plus Germany) nor Iran has much time. Therefore, the best choice is that the two sides take the issue seriously," Solana underlined.

Also, in a meeting with the Chairman of the Expediency Council Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani Solana noted that Iran's presidential election result is significant for western countries, adding, Iranian people have the right to achieve their historical and cultural position in the world via interaction with the world.

The United States and some of its Western allies have tightened economic sanctions on Iran to curb its nuclear program. However, Iran denies the allegations, saying its nuclear program is only for peaceful purposes such as generating electricity and making medical isotopes.

At the end of the ceremony, Rohani also unveiled the proposed list of nominees for his cabinet.

Numerous representatives of other countries were present at the inauguration ceremony of Iran's new president. The delegations from over 50 countries included presidents, prime ministers, vice presidents and parliament speakers. This is the first time that Iran has invited foreign officials to attend the presidential inauguration ceremony.

On June 14, 2013, Rouhani won the presidential elections in Iran, gathering over 50 percent of total votes.

Rouhani previously said that he will work towards the removal of western sanctions, adding that his government will adopt moderate policies and actions. He described the June 14 elections as great showcase of democracy, and praised high public turnout.

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